It’s the most wonderful time of the year and everyone’s looking for the perfect holiday recipes to make this year’s holiday celebrations the best ever! Here are 7 of my absolute favorite holiday recipes including the perfect holiday brunch recipes, holiday appetizers, and of course, holiday sweets and desserts including cookies, pies, and other show-stopping holiday desserts!
1. Holiday Breakfast : Apple Cinnamon French Toast Bake
- 2 tsp butter for greasing the pan
- 20 thick slices of French bread
- 12 eggs
- 4 1/2 cups milk
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 3 apples cut into chunks
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Powdered sugar for dusting
- Maple Syrup for serving
- Grease a large rectangular baking pan with butter.
- Arrange the slices of French bread in the baking dish so the tops are facing up.
- In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and pour the egg mixture carefully over the bread in the casserole dish.
- Add the chopped apples to the top, along with the pecans.
- Combine the white sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle it over the casserole.
- Bake immediately at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 40 minutes. Remove the casserole from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Dust with powdered sugar and garnish with whipped cream and maple syrup when serving.
2. Holiday Brunch: Hash Brown Waffle
- 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes
- 2 pinches sea salt
- 1 pinch black pepper
- Melted butter or canola oil
- Wash and peel the potatoes, then grate them using a cheese grater. Wrap them in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out all the water you can.
- Add the grated potatoes to a large bowl along with the egg, garlic powder, parsley, and salt and pepper. Using a fork, stir everything together until combined.
- Heat waffle iron and spray it with canola oil or brush on melted butter.
- Add 1/4 cup of potato mixture to each square of the waffle iron and spread. Let the hash browns cook for about 3-4 more minutes and until golden brown.
- It’s best to serve these hash browns immediately, while they’re nice and crispy!
3. Holiday Party Appetizer: Roasted Red Pepper Quiche Cups
- 2 small red bell peppers
- 4 sheets phyllo pastry
- 1/3 cup chopped green onions
- 8 large eggs
- 3/4 cup milk
- 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- Sliced green onions
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place the bell peppers on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast them at 450 degrees for 30 minutes, turning them over at about the 15-minute mark.
- Remove peppers from the oven and chop them.
- Turn your oven down to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Stack 4 large phyllo pastry sheets one on top of the other. Cut the phyllo pastry (4 sheets thick) into 12 squares.
- Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray and arrange the phyllo squares in each muffin cup, offsetting the corners to create a flower-petal effect.
- Add the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper to a bowl and whisk until combined.
- Distribute half the chopped roasted red peppers evenly between each of the 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle half of the shredded cheese and all the green onions over top of the roasted red peppers. Pour the egg mixture evenly into the 12 muffin cups and top with the remaining chopped roasted red pepper and the remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake for about 18 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Garnish with a few chopped green onions and serve immediately.
4. Holiday Snack: Sweet and Salty Kettle Corn
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 2 tbsp white sugar
- 1/3 cup popping corn
- a pinch or two of sea salt
- Add the oil to your stove-top popcorn maker or a large dutch oven pot and heat it on medium-high heat.
- Once the oil is hot, add the popcorn kernels and listen for them to sizzle and begin to pop.
- Add the sugar over top of the kernels.
- Shake the pot back and forth slightly over the heat while the kernels pop so the sugar doesn’t burn.
- Remove the pot from the heat as soon as the popping slows to a stop and immediately pour the popped kernels into a large bowl.
- Sprinkle the popcorn with a pinch or two of salt, toss well, and serve warm!
5. Christmas Treat: Amaretti Cookies
- 2 cups whole almonds
- 2 egg whites
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 tbsp almond extract
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp powdered sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set them aside.
- Add the almonds to your food processor and blend until small.
- Beat the egg whites in a large bowl. Gradually beat in the sugar.
- Stir the almonds into the egg white mixture, along with the flour, almond extract, and baking powder.
- Drop tablespoons of the batter onto baking sheets 2 inches apart.
- Bake them for about 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are a light brown color and crisp on top
- Let the cookies cool, sprinkle some icing sugar on top, if you wish, and enjoy!
6. Christmas Dessert: Cranberry Apple Pie
- 2 prepared pie crusts
- 4 cups peeled and sliced apples
- 2 cups cranberries
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
- Fit a pie crust into a 9-inch pie dish and arrange sliced apples into crust. Spread cranberries over apples.
- Whisk sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle mixture over cranberries.
- Distribute butter pieces over pie filling. Place remaining crust over filling, crimp both crusts together and cut several slits into top crust to vent steam.
- Bake until pie is browned and fruit filling is bubbling, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Serve by itself or with whipped cream!
7. Holiday Bake: Gingerbread Spice Cake
- 1 cup softened unsalted butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cup molasses
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
For the frosting:
- 8 ounces softened cream cheese
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 4 to 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- a few drops of vanilla extract
- 1-2 tablespoons milk optional, depending on texture
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a rectangular baking pan with butter.
- Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar until fluffy.
- Beat in the molasses until combined and add the eggs one at a time and beat them in.
- Add the grated ginger and lemon juice and beat in.
- Add the flour, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and salt to a separate bowl and whisk until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture slowly, beating them in.
- Combine the boiling water and baking soda in a small bowl and add it to the batter, stirring it in just until combined.
- Scrape batter into cake pan and bake for about 45-48 minutes.
- Set the cake to cool in the pan on a wire rack until it’s cooled completely.
- Make the frosting by whipping together the butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy.
- Add the powdered sugar, and whip until it’s all incorporated. At this time, add the milk if texture is too stiff.
- Spread the frosting over the cake, cut into square slices and serve!